Regarding OWL and ontology related stuff... well; I do have a very specific opinion which is, unfortunately, not shared by most of the IT people.

In my humble opinion, any information has:

  • A specific meaning (why),
  • In a specific context (where, when, how),
  • For a specific (intelligent) player ("Who", with specific objectives; objectives are the only way to give a meaning to "why-where-when-how"),

For example, the information "it is raining" will lead to different intelligible behaviors, whether the (intelligent) observer is:

  • About to water the garden,
  • Or to have a walk in the forest.

Information Systems are just automation. In socio-technical organizations, it assists human being in their decisions or it can decide by itself in case it has been appointed for. In the automated processes, unless we design IT systems able to foresee any evolution (an impossible and endless work), the only reply is to be able to disseminate intelligence at the very subsidiary level, sometimes at objects' levels themselves. This, to make Information Systems able to understand - in context - the events and their specific meanings... and to react accordingly. In other words, if we do not give the ability to IT systems to auto-adapt, whatever are the evolutions of the ecosystems they are immersed in, we will go on implementing IT systems in restricted value chains, in a "silo" and top-down mode.

E.G. to create this current exchange we need:

  1. You (very intelligent reader),
  2. Me (less bus still clever one) - ;-) -,
  3. A lookup service (with additional features... all that invisible Internet stuff behind our screens),
  4. A common basis for the language: your perfect English, my Globish.

We can exchange and understand each other only because we have a minimum of intelligence on both sides, everything in the middle is - comparatively - very limited.

To say it differently, any deterministic (standardized?) approach of the "intelligent stuff" will only be able to address limited scopes and well-organized value chains... and the scenarios that are often expected in the Internet of Things initiatives are hardly apprehensible.

There are standardized ways to produce software intelligence but there are infinite ways to use it. Any standardization work, here, would only focus on the way to produce brains, not on the way it could be used (we can create rabbits without any need to anticipate their lives).